COALVILLE RFC 61 SPALDING RFC 18: HARRY Brown was sent off as Town’s Jekyll and Hyde form in Midlands One East continued on Saturday.
Despite winning all three of their home fixtures so far, this was Spalding’s fourth successive away defeat of the season.
Traditionally Coalville has proved an unhappy hunting ground for Harry Sharman’s men – and on this occasion it was no different.
Coalville went into the clash with just one win under their belt, but the visitors made a nightmare start.
Not only did they ship a try inside five minutes, but Brown was given his marching orders for foul play moments later, meaning Spalding were forced to play 72 minutes with 14 men.
Coalville wasted little time hammering home their advantage as they added three unconverted tries in the space of 20 minutes, before Town finally got on the scoreboard with a Jim Williams penalty.
This seemed to spark something of a fightback from the way side, with Williams kicking another three points and big Mark Haighton going over in the corner for Spalding’s maiden try of the afternoon.
Williams missed the conversion, but at 20-11 the visitors were back in the game.
However, a scrum was conceded soon afterwards and Coalville made the best use of their possession to run the length of the pitch to score, leaving their kicker an easier opportunity to convert.
With two minutes left of the first period, Town again showed their fighting spirit.
Skipper Sharman, who led his players impressively, crossed the line for a defiant try close to the posts, leaving a simpler conversion for Williams and making the score 27-18 at the break.
Unfortunately for Town, the second half did not live up to expectations as Coalville ran in six tries among 34 unanswered points.
But this was not before they had been severely tested by Spalding. Sharman broke through the defence and linked with Haighton, who looked as if he had a clear run only to be stopped short.
Another similar incident resulted in Ash Anker making good ground, only to be held up. On the wing George Brown penetrated the Coalville defence too, but again was stopped ten metres from the line.
Spalding were close to scoring on a number of other occasions, but it was the more masterful and accomplished Coalville team which prevented any further points for the visitors – and on each occasion turned defence into attack and a score.
The defeat sees Town drop into the bottom four.
Town: Sharman (captain), Buckberry, Crane, Rowlands, Haighton, Hausermann, E Duerden, Anker, H Brown, J Williams, Cooke, S Williams, Chappell, G Brown, Williamson, Branton, Hoyles, Smith.
• Saturday: Town v Paviors (3pm).